moves from insurance investigator to real estate agent
It took more than a little urging from his
wife before Oliver Ruiz
decided to go into the real estate business three years ago, and now he
had made the move long ago.
oliver.jpg (6821 bytes)Oliver RuizRuiz
, 49, who works out of the Coral Gables office of Esslinger-Wooten-Maxwell
, recalls that he
came to a crossroads in life shortly after Hurricane Andrew in 1992.
"After the hurricane, the insurance companies were very tight with their money and my job as an insurance investigator was to deal with them," he
said."It was maddening.Clients would yell and scream, insurance adjusters would yell and scream, I would come home from work all but brain dead."Ruiz
wife became very insistent that he
find a new line of work and, over his
strenuous objections, pushed him in the direction of real estate.
drove me to real estate school and signed me up," he
recalled with a smile."Since that time, it's history, the best move I ever made."Ruiz
real estate license in 1966 and began specializing in the high-end luxury home market.He said he was a multi-million dollar salesman in each successive year and joined Esslinger-Wooten-Maxwell in February.
"Basically, I enjoy what I'm doing and I consider myself one of the best Realtors in the business," he
said."In the few months I've been at EWM, I've won several awards, including Listing Agent of the Week, Listing Agent of the Month and I'm a Top Presidential Producer "Ruiz
, who lived in Coral Gables for 14 years, moved to Pinecrest a little over a year ago.As a result, while he
deals with properties throughout South Florida, he
specializes in homes in the Gables and Pinecrest areas.He
client list is made up primarily of people who can afford a high-dollar luxury home.
"Since I've spent a good number of years in the insurance industry where I met a great number of attorneys and doctors, my sphere of influence in the real estate business is in the legal and medical fields."
That's not to say Ruiz
doesn't represent clients from other fields.He
lists the Larios family and several agents for superstar sports figures as examples of those who utilize his
real estate services.He
cites Joe Cubas, the agent for New York
Yankees pitcher "El Duque" Hernandez and his
brother, Miami Marlins pitcher Livan Hernandez, as one of his
also said that Jose Canseco's agent contacted him about listing the baseball star's house in Weston and that he
recently met with movie star George Hamilton, who appears to be very interested in a purchasing a home in South Florida. Ruiz was born into an influential family in Havana, Cuba, with interests in textiles and shipping.
In 1960, at age 11, he
came to South Florida with his
mother, father and two younger brothers in the first wave of exiles fleeing Fidel Castro's tyranny.
"I'm proud to say that I am an American," Ruiz said. 'But, I'm also proud to be Cuban, and it upsets me greatly that I'm not able to go back and see the country where I was born.My grandmother and grandfather passed away and I wasn't even able to go to their funerals or see where they were buried."Ruiz grew up in South Florida, attended Miami-Dade Community College and then joined the U.S. Army.
"It was one of the great experiences of my life," he
said."They sent me to Colorado, where I learned to ski and that has been one of my true pleasures ever since.We own a condo in Aspen and when I retire, I plan to move there."Ruiz and wife, Iliana, a prominent Dade personal injury attorney, have four children: Oliver Allen, 26, Stacey, 20, Ingrid, 18, and Adrian, 8.
...Ruiz is on the board of trustees of St. Phillips Episcopal School and is a member of the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce.
See Next Story